ACT Best of Canberra Mountain Bike Experience Workshops

Scotty T

2.6 inches
Faaaark this totally slipped off my radar, I sent a late note:

Hi there,

I realise that I'm late on the submission, I had thought the date was extended until end of October but now realise it was September. I hope my submission can be accepted.

I have been mountain biking for 29 years, and have lived in Canberra for the last 19 years. A major reason I moved here was the mountain biking. I live 3km from Stromlo and ride there every week at least once. I ride other trails in Canberra regularly and have participated in trail building days with Kowalski Brothers.

I think our facilities are very good, and for generalist and some speciliast moutain biking we are well catered for, however there are things I would like to see to improve mountain biking in Canberra. I agree with the consensus in the MTB community that we've lagged a little compared to other mtb destinations Australia wide and that we're struggling to offer the variety and size of other mtb parks and trail networks. We also have a number of scattered destinations, none of which have the full MTB park experience which is a very large market now, compared to say 20 years ago when Thredbo and Buller were the only MTB "parks" as such.

Stromlo is the main attraction for Canberra mountain biking. The facility is excellent and the trail networks continue to expand. An accommodation opportunity for a business to provide on-site accomodation would be a good development. I realise a lot of other people are talking about linking Stromlo out to the Brindabellas. I think this is a fantastic idea, and I believe that it can be done without adversely impacting other user groups and land owners if carefully negotiated with those stakeholders. Perhaps it could even run directly alongside the pipeline that goes out to Cotter so as to have minimal impact due to being on land that the government currently uses for the pipeline. This would attract people who want to do large distances with plenty of climbing and descending, currently Stromlo is limiting for this type of riding so connecting a trail network in the Brindabellas where there is more elevation would suit this.

The other type of riding is gravity based with shuttles, I like the idea of expanding the shuttle service to work out of Cotter for fast shuttling to Brindabella downhill runs. Personally I would suggest three different skill level runs from the higest convenient shuttling point to Cotter. Public facilities like parking and toilets exist at Cotter already so it would not require any infrastructure to cater to this type of riding. I think this covers the moutain bike park aspect, plus there is a much wider variety of terrain option in the native forest that would provide a different experience to the still recovering from bushfires Stromlo. I feel that with the right investment and planning Canberra could excel and reach a higher level than other current popular destinations, because we have a major city fringed with several riding destinations within 20 km of each other which some other parks lack being located in more rural areas.

Other places in Canberra are adequate for what they are and are being well managed by communities working with government and stakeholders (eg. Bruce Ridge, Majura, Sparrow), however I would like to see investment in some pine forest to exclude them from logging in favour of MTB trails. Particularly Majura because of it's proximity to the city, historical significance to MTB and small parcel of land compared to other local plantation areas. I was a bit stunned to see Majura clear felled recently as I was under the impression it was now a mountain bike destination, very disappointing. It becomes impossible to ride these open field trails in hot weather, so the destination gets avoided altogether. There is scope for expansion of some of these trails around Canberra however most are at a good balance in my opinion offering a quick blast for people wanting something different to Stromlo. Radiata Pine can grow 80-90 years, it would be awesome to have some of our pine forests mature and become the unique trail riding experience that these forest offer. People travel world wide to ride in mature native pine forests.

Again I hope this can be accepted and if not at least show some support for similar ideas that have been floated in the Canberra MTB community.

Regards,
Scotty T - Rivett resident.
 

Tubbsy

Terministrator
Staff member
Nice work @Scotty T

I'm sure while they're not accepting submissions any more, the fact that you're adding support to ideas floated by others will only help.
 

droenn

Fat Man's XC President
Interesting view on the pine forests @Scotty T - my idea would be to keep the pine forests as active logging plantations and use them for MTB recreation during that period. If there are a few harvest periods, then the trails need to be modified/rebuilt (like at Kowen) after planting of next lot of trees. At the end of it (which could be a span of decades), they should be restored to bushland as best as possible. We don't need permanent pine forests around the place, imo (except perhaps the Arboretum which serves a different purpose) - even if they do provide nice shade in summer...
 

Scotty T

2.6 inches
Interesting view on the pine forests @Scotty T - my idea would be to keep the pine forests as active logging plantations and use them for MTB recreation during that period. If there are a few harvest periods, then the trails need to be modified/rebuilt (like at Kowen) after planting of next lot of trees. At the end of it (which could be a span of decades), they should be restored to bushland as best as possible. We don't need permanent pine forests around the place, imo (except perhaps the Arboretum which serves a different purpose) - even if they do provide nice shade in summer...
Yeah I was just thinking of how we could have something unique with existing forests. But thinking about your view a permanent monoculture not serving a commercial purpose is inherently a waste of space. Much better invested in making sustainable trails in native bush.
 

Tubbsy

Terministrator
Staff member
I had the opportunity to chat with the project manager this week and gained an insight into the shape of the proposal and proposed location. I can't reveal specifics yet, suffice to say that the type of terrain and riding 'burners tend to get excited by, will be very much the focus.

There will be a media release in the next few weeks, and I'll update the thread when it comes through.
 

BrindiCruiser

Likes Dirt
I had the opportunity to chat with the project manager this week and gained an insight into the shape of the proposal and proposed location. I can't reveal specifics yet, suffice to say that the type of terrain and riding 'burners tend to get excited by, will be very much the focus.

There will be a media release in the next few weeks, and I'll update the thread when it comes through.
Any updates on big picture planning for ACT mountain biking? Nothing on the YourSay website run by ACT govt.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

Tubbsy

Terministrator
Staff member
Any updates on big picture planning for ACT mountain biking? Nothing on the YourSay website run by ACT govt.
I actually emailed them about it a few weeks back, and this was the response:

The Draft Canberra Mountain Bike Report (Draft Report) was scheduled to be released for public consultation in March 2020. However as the Covid-19 situation developed, all ACT Government public communications and engagement was put on hold. This was to enable the ACT Government to send clear health and advice messages as well as resource the communications and engagement team.

We are still progressing the project to master planning phase as the ACT Government has already committed funding for this.

You will receive an email with a link to the Draft Report when the restrictions on public communications and engagement are lifted (fingers crossed that it will be soon).


So hopefully not too much longer! If what has been described to me happens it'll be very exciting.
 

Tubbsy

Terministrator
Staff member
Hey everyone,

If you haven't had a look at the draft report yet, I'd encourage you to do so ASAFP.

They are hoping for emails from people to confirm that draft report reflects the submissions made. Obviously the proposed trail from Stromlo to Cotter is a great idea, and in fact a Labor election promise, so hopefully that will come about soon. Expanding trails around Cotter is also proposed, and if done well you could in theory ride from Stromlo to the @Kowalski Brothers trails at Cotter Pines, all on single track.

Worthy of note is the elevation change from the top of Stromlo down to Cotter river is 400m, double what Stromlo has on offer right now.

However we really should show our enthusiasm for the Blue Range mtb park concept. Elevation change there is 500m, but potentially 800 if down to the Cotter. Imagine that.

Please have a read of the report and email them with your comments.

Going to tag Canberra people (and frequent visitors) as I remember you, but anyone who knows quieter forum members or non-forum people, please get them to write in with support.

And of course, as the whole plan is based around tourism, anyone who thinks they may visit for a ride please email them too. The more the better.

@droenn @bear the bear @SummitFever @Scotty T @Haakon @johnny @T-Rex @nzhumpy @Litenbror @damo666 @BrindiCruiser @PDub @lucifuge @D01 @sc. @slimjim1 @Tim_the_Clyde @SF Trailboy @RichJS @peanut @Shinigami @Kramer

Mentioning the amount of $$$ other regions are spending on mtb, and for Canberra to play in this kind of market is important.

Any email, however short will be helpful!


COMMENTS CLOSE MONDAY!!!!
 
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Tubbsy

Terministrator
Staff member
Hi people,

Just a quick reminder to you all to write in with support and/or comments for the masterplan. Tomorrow is the last day for feedback. Doesn't need to be a big essay.

@droenn @bear the bear @SummitFever @Scotty T @Haakon @johnny @T-Rex @nzhumpy @Litenbror @damo666 @BrindiCruiser @PDub @lucifuge @D01@sc. @slimjim1 @Tim_the_Clyde @SF Trailboy @RichJS @peanut @Shinigami @Kramer

Link to the masterplan doc is here, complete with proposed trail maps etc


This is the email address:

canberramtbexperience@act.gov.au



THere's also an interactive google map here for you to check out:

 
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Tubbsy

Terministrator
Staff member
Thanks for the reminder @Tubbsy . I have sent an appropriately worded letter of support for the draft report.
Great, thanks for that. Every little bit of extra feedback helps.

I've also spotted on another page that Tuesday might be the final day, so the rest of you still have time.

Don't be the strong silent type!
 

Tubbsy

Terministrator
Staff member
Thanks, Tim, fantastic.

This could be a really big thing for Canberra so it really is worth all of our time to remain engaged. There won't be another big review and masterplan for ten or twenty years you can be sure of that, so get writing.

Just because I'm annoying (really annoying) I'm going to page you all again!

@droenn @bear the bear @Scotty T @Haakon @johnny @T-Rex @nzhumpy @Litenbror @damo666 @BrindiCruiser @PDub @lucifuge@D01@sc. @slimjim1 @SF Trailboy @RichJS @peanut @Shinigami @Kramer

Even if it's just a "I really love the plans, please make it happen" - the volume of contributions is noted and will be discussed.
 

Litenbror

Eats Squid
Done, if variation of dates the comments are due by is anything to go by it's going to be a long road.

Para 2 "consultation until Monday 2 November"
Para 4 "email before 5pm Tuesday 3 November"
We need the hand slapping face emoji.
 

Haakon

Call me Ken, whoreken
Done. Hopefully ill be gone by the time they're built, but something to come back and visit.
 
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